Exclusive! New Cars for 2011

We bring you confidential info on all the cars being launched in 2011.

Chevrolet Beat diesel (Early 2011)
After the successful launch of the petrol-engined Beat, General Motors India is going to introduce a diesel version sometime in January 2011. The much-anticipated 936cc three-cylinder common-rail diesel engine is basically Fiat’s Multijet 1.3 minus one cylinder, and that means it has a good crack at being really impressive. It is expected to produce 57bhp and an impressive 14.52kgm of torque. If GM can give the car good driveability and reasonable performance, it will split the market wide open. Fantastic fuel economy and very low running costs can be expected.

See Chevrolet Beat image gallery here

Chevrolet Tavera Face-lift (Early 2011)
Chevrolet pulled out the Tavera from BS IV cities in 2010 since the 2.5-litre Isuzu motor failed to meet the latest emission norms. Now, GM has tied up with Sonalika to use the Rhino’s 2.0-litre common-rail diesel engine in the Tavera. Although it is a smaller engine, this common-rail motor’s power is up to 100bhp from the earlier unit’s 80bhp. The new Tavera will get a face-lift as well as new interiors.

Chevrolet Sail (December 2011)
The Sail is the first passenger car GM has designed and developed completely in China. However, this car is not a grounds-up design from GM’s Chinese partners. It uses the same platform as the Opel Corsa (though beefed up and updated) sold in India until 2006, so the engineering is actually quite solid. And the design language is impressive too for the Sail shares styling cues with other models like the Beat and Cruze. It will compete with the likes of the Dzire and the Manza and could give them a run for their money if GM is able to undercut its pricing, which will be somewhere between Rs 6-7.30 lakh. The Sail is expected to be powered by a 1.4-litre petrol producing 104bhp and a 1.3-litre Fiat diesel producing around 90bhp.

See Chevrolet Sail image gallery here

New Ford Fiesta (Early 2011)
The new Fiesta saloon that employs Ford’s global kinetic design theme is an instant eye- catcher. It is bigger than the current-generation Fiesta and will get a more powerful 1.6-litre petrol motor producing 118bhp. The diesel gets 90bhp from its 1.6-litre motor, up from the current 1.4’s 68bhp and it will have a very useful 20.7kgm of torque. There’s more – this car’s interiors are something that’s completely different from what you get to see in this class. The funky looking dash and high-quality plastics make it feel like a truly modern car and Ford has tuned this Mazda platform to its own very high standards. This should mean it has a comfortable ride and agile handling. Also, this car could get the option of a DSG-like dual-clutch automatic gearbox.

See new Ford Fiesta images here

Honda accord face-lift (Feb 2011)
The Honda Accord will undergo the surgeon’s knife for a mid-cycle refresh. This will include subtle exterior design updates that include a new styled front grille, bumper and rear deck lid, enhanced interior styling and new wheel designs. Additional interior updates also include a slightly improved instrument panel design. The climate-control buttons are now positioned closer to the driver for ease of use. So far there is no news on the engine changes though. Engine options are expected to remain the same, however there can be a slight increase in power and improved fuel economy.

See face-lift Honda Accord images here

New Honda Civic (Early 2011)
The next-generation Honda Civic will be redesigned but the styling theme will echo the current-generation Civic. Honda is keen to keep the identity of its car intact, which means some of the current styling clues will remain. However, the car is not likely to be as low- slung as the current model, which has resulted in all sorts of customer-related issues, especially from older customers. There’s also talk of Honda’s hybrid system now making it into the mainstream in India and this will provide for an even more fuel efficient alternative. Honda is also talking about an alternative engine to the 1800cc petrol that powers the car. A 1600cc downsized motor is a possibility and the range, as now, will come with the option of an automatic gearbox as well. Also on the cards is further localisation to make the car even more cost effective.

Honda Brio (September 2011)
We first saw the face of Honda’s ‘New Small Car’ at its global unveiling at the Auto Expo 2010 in Delhi. The basic styling cues have been retained, making for a very modern and handsome-looking car. While the 3.6-metre length and relatively compact dimensions mean this car is shorter than a Swift, Honda engineers have worked hard to extract maximum space from inside the cabin. Expect the Brio to offer clever space utilisation and practicality as seen on the Jazz. There is no conventional central console, it gets slightly retro dials, a generous smattering of circular vents and plenty of beige and chrome which gives the Honda a slightly upmarket feel on the inside and Honda has paid plenty of attention to storage space as well. Power will come from a 1.2-litre engine from the Jazz and a 1-litre unit might arrive at a later stage. This will be a three-cylinder version of the same motor but without the VTEC technology. Prices are expected to start at Rs 4.5 lakh, which will be good value. The Brio will arrive around September 2011.

See Honda Brio images here

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Issue: 193 | Autocar India: September 2015

The Chevrolet Trailblazer, new Skoda Superb and Tata Hexa are the stars of our 16th Anniversary issue. And that, of course, is just the tip of the iceberg. Read on.
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